Grassley on Senate Floor: Americans Aren't Buying "Bidenomics"

Floor Remarks by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa)
Ranking Member, Senate Committee on the Budget
Americans Aren’t Buying ‘Bidenomics’
July 12, 2013


We just heard my friend from Nebraska say that Biden wants “Bidenomics” to be all about restoring the American Dream.

Well, for most Americans, it’s turning out to be a nightmare.

Inflation brought on by the Biden administration’s misguided policies has Americans trying to figure out how to afford everyday necessities. 

One thing that they are not buying is the Biden administration’s latest catchphrase: Bidenomics.

Over the 4th of July break, I held meetings in 24 of Iowa’s 99 counties. There’s a very common theme there. That common theme was that families and businesses are struggling with the economic impacts of inflation.

It’s not just Iowans who are feeling the pain from the economy under the Biden administration. According to a recent Associated Press survey, only 34 percent of Americans approve of President Biden’s handling of the economy.  

President Biden’s message to these Americans is: don’t believe your bank accounts. 

Well, Madame President: That message doesn’t resonate. Iowa families are hit with ballooning bills and higher prices at every corner.

For two years, Iowans have been stretched thin because of decades-high inflation stoked by Democrats’ reckless $2 trillion spending spree. 

A spending spree that would not have happened if they had listened to their own Democrat economists. Particularly, the outstanding Harvard economist and former Secretary of Treasury in the Clinton administration and economic advisor to other Democrat presidents – their own Larry Summers – told them before this president took over that the economy was already turning around – don't spend any more money, or you will have inflation.

So what do we see?

On average, American consumers are facing prices that are 16 percent higher today than when Biden took office. While prices have climbed, wages have failed to keep up. American workers have seen their paychecks shrink by more than 3 percent in real terms.

Now, we heard the word “transitory” – that inflation was going to be transitory, so you didn’t need to worry about it. This was as the Biden administration claimed when they took office, and, of course, inflation has proven persistent.  

Just remember, [we had] 1.4 percent inflation the day this president took office. It rose to 9.1 percent a year ago, and it’s still at 4.5 percent.

In its effort to tame inflation, the Fed has hiked interest rates to the highest level in 16 years - putting mortgages and business loans out of reach for more and more Americans. 

Half of small businesses report delaying plans to grow their business due to rising interest costs. 

A rebranding of his far left agenda as “Bidenomics” is cold comfort for Iowans and Americans everywhere who are coping with rising prices, falling real wages and ballooning interest rates.   

As we saw with last year’s partisan tax and spending package that the Democrats named the “Inflation Reduction Act,” labels are often deceiving. Contrary to the bill’s name, this partisan tax-and-spending package had nothing to do with reducing inflation or providing relief to Americans struggling with inflation. 

The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office – and I emphasize the word nonpartisan – confirms [the Inflation Reduction Act] will worsen inflation. And, of course, recent estimates show that it will add hundreds of billions more to the nation’s credit card. 

Rather than providing relief to Americans struggling to make ends meet, this legislation raised Americans’ taxes while showering Democrat-favored industries with corporate handouts, with the government taking an increasing role in choosing winners and losers in our economy. Unless you’re a corporation or a wealthy individual looking to buy an $80,000 electric SUV, the Democrat Inflation Enhancement Act has little to offer. 

I think changing the name from the Inflation Reduction Act to the Inflation Enhancement Act is exactly the intellectually honest thing to do.

“Bidenomics” isn’t about growing the economy from the middle out or the bottom up as the President claims in almost every speech. It’s the same old top-down big government agenda Democrats have always pursued. It means then, as you know, higher taxes, more reckless spending and a growing national debt as far as the eye can see into the future.

It’s time for a change in policy, not merely a change in messaging.  

President Biden needs to redirect his message to the real facts of life, because “Bidenomics” is not selling.

I yield the floor.